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panopticon

[pan-op-ti-kon]
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noun
  1. a building, as a prison, hospital, library, or the like, so arranged that all parts of the interior are visible from a single point.

Origin of panopticon

1760–70; pan- + Greek optikón sight, seeing (neuter of optikós; see optic)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Word Origin and History for panopticon

n.

1768, a type of optical instrument or telescope, from Greek pan "all" (see pan-) + optikon, neuter of optikos "of or for sight" (see optic). Later the name of a type of prison designed by Bentham (1791) in which wardens had a constant view of all inmates, and "a showroom" (1850).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper